Lifelong learning matters.

Expand your knowledge of historical and contemporary topics with the Summer Learning Series. From talks on the Civil War and Michigan to the details of Brexit, you're invited to learn from expert faculty and practice lifelong learning at any age.

Summer 2019 Courses

Grand Rapids and the U.S. Civil War

This series of talks will cover the Civil War era, as it impacted Michigan in general and the Grand Rapids area in particular. The talks will cover the antebellum period in Michigan, with the founding of the Republican Party and the prominent role in the Underground Railroad; the role of various prominent Michigan units and soldiers during the war; and the history of the Third Michigan Infantry, mustered in Grand Rapids and serving in the Army of the Potomac. Be ready for reenactors in uniform to spice up the final day!

  • Dates: May 29, June 5 and June 12
  • Time: 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Speaker: Dr. Michael Stevens, Professor of English

Irish Literature

This course will cover the history and culture of Ireland from the potato famine and great migration to America on up to the present sectarian conflicts between Catholics and Protestants in Northern Ireland.

  • Dates: July 10, 17 and 24
  • Time: 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Speaker: Dr. Jason Stevens, Associate Professor of English

Brexit and British Politics

Since a controversial referendum in 2016, the UK has been rocked by debates about Brexit—Britain's exit from the European Union. This class will explain why Brexit has proved such a fraught and controversial process, as well as setting it in the wider context of ongoing debates about British politics, society and identity.

  • Dates: July 31, Aug. 7 and Aug. 14
  • Time: 11:30 a.m. - 1 p.m.
  • Speaker: Dr. Martin Spence, Associate Professor of History


Registration for the Summer Learning Series ranges from $20 for one class to $45 for three classes. Your class registration cost includes admittance to lectures given by expert faculty members, all lesson materials and a credit card processing fee (2.5%).

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